I received my undergraduate degree in History at Brigham Young University, and my graduate degree in Medieval Britain and Europe from Aberystwyth University. I began tutoring as a child when my teachers sent me to help others in my school, and have continued ever since. I have always loved helping students raise their grades and strengthen their understanding of a subject. My greatest academic passions are history and writing, and I truly enjoy sharing the information I have worked so hard to gain. I have worked professionally as a copyeditor and excel at aiding students in the areas of proofreading and referencing. My tutoring subjects include reading, writing essays, social studies, anthropology, religion, English, and literature. My favorite subjects are history, anthropology, and all subjects relating to civilizations. These fields are important to me because I love connecting students with their foundations and displaying how our own civilization progressed to its current state. I teach all ages, I worked professionally with young children in a montessori school before teaching university students while in college. I now tutor high school and college-aged students and teach religion to students aged 18 and up in my spare time. I tutor my students with tailor-made approaches. Some learn better with a simple layout of facts, repetitive practice, visual aids, or simply focused one-on-one time. I believe that any student doing their best is to be commended and supported, and I strive to ensure that my students understand how much I support and want to help them. In my spare time I enjoy crafting, travelling, hanging out with my friends, and blogging.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: Brigham Young University-Provo - Bachelors, History
Graduate Degree: Aberystwyth University - Masters, Medieval Britain and Europe
I love to travel with my family. While I enjoy exotic trips, I am also happy to travel to a new city near my home to learn about what other places have to offer. I dabble in crafting, I mostly got into it because I wanted to make 'nerd' items such as scarves based off of items in TV shows, books, etc. I have recently been building a blog where I can display medieval history in, what I hope to be, an interesting light.
10th Grade Reading
10th Grade Writing
11th Grade Reading
11th Grade Writing
1st Grade Reading
8th Grade Reading
8th Grade Writing
Ancient and Medieval Heritage
College Level American History
Elementary School Reading
High School English
High School Level American History
High School Writing
Middle School Reading
Middle School Writing
Study Skills and Organization
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
When educating both teens and adults, I feel that it is important to first put the student at ease. An environment which creates an atmosphere of trust and openness is one in which learning can flourish. When the students feel comfortable with an older authority figure, they are more likely to answer questions as well as pose their own without fear of judgment or fear of appearing less than intelligent. In tutoring teenagers, I find that girls respond well when I try to get to know them and spend a little time simply chatting. I am currently employing this method with several female students and things are going well. The girls enjoy telling someone about all the fun or even annoying things in their lives. When the girls felt that I was "on their side," they began to respect and listen to me. While I also make an effort to learn about boys that I tutor, they tend to be less forthcoming with personal information and so I prefer to ensure there is movement during a session. I am tutoring a male student for his upcoming ACT exam and we take small breaks to have snacks, move to a different area for study, and allow him to vent his frustration with the material. Simple things like throwing balls during quizzes or simply changing the setting can put the students at ease and encourage them to participate.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
In the first session with a student, I introduce myself and offer a bit of personal information such as what I enjoy doing, how I felt about various subjects in school, and what I enjoy about helping students. I ask the students what they enjoy doing with their free time, as well as what they like/dislike about school. I then ask about what they feel their strengths and weaknesses are and have them take a short practice test for each subject we are studying. That assessment will help me decide how to tailor a lesson plan for the individual student.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I believe that a successful tutor teaches not only the subject matter, but provides the student with the tools to help themselves. Technology has made it possible for everyone to access a wealth of information, and students are no longer confined to index cards full of notes and a stack of encyclopedias. Those who are looking for the easy way out can have apps on their phones that quiz them each day; there are games that incorporate learning strategies into the fun, and audio programs they can listen to at any time. As I discover the strategy that I feel is best able to help my student progress, I teach them how to go about finding, learning, and utilizing information. I currently teach a student who does well in reading but struggles with science questions. I teach him to use the techniques which serve him well in reading to assist him as he approaches science questions posed in the form of reading passages, and his science scores are improving.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
I have several methods of keeping students motivated. I give some candy, or offer others shorter tutoring periods and less homework if they improve enough. When they do not complete assignments, I have them do the work during the session, which can extend it for quite a bit. I send daily reminders in the form of text or e-mail to make sure they know I have not forgotten their work, as well as reminding them to do it.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
When a student has difficulty with a certain topic, I slow down the pace and work with more intensity upon a specific point. Such a situation often calls for an entirely different strategy than the one used for concepts that come more easily. Each subject has its own tips and tricks to help break down the difficult pieces, and it is always simply a matter of finding the right trick for each individual student and topic. These tricks include memory games, presenting information in an explanatory chart as a visual aid, and correlating the concept with real life situations.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
There are many strategies for helping students who are having difficulty with reading comprehension. I am currently working with a student who was consistently providing answers which were the opposite of the correct choices. After asking him his reasoning, I discovered he simply did not understand how to use clues to infer the meaning of unknown vocabulary. We now both make lists of words that are commonly found and misunderstood as well as how to use prefixes and suffixes to figure out a word's meaning and using context clues to find an appropriate definition. Other students have difficulty focusing or with time management and I teach those how to find the most important parts of assigned reading and recognize their meaning. This strategy generally requires learning the various styles of writing and terms involved, such as metaphor, allegory, poetry, etc. Many students have difficulty connecting the information in a paragraph with questions posed after reading them. These students often need help locating important parts of reading and learning to sort which pieces connect and which details are unimportant.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
When I start to work with a student, I always provide a small assessment test; this way I can see which specific areas could benefit from extra help.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
Oral assessment is one of my favorite techniques for checking a student's comprehension of the material. By using a conversational tone and laid back approach, I can assess an area which a student may find more stressful, while others prefer rapid-fire quizzing.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
I build a student's confidence by beginning the tutoring process with what they know, and I build upon that foundation until they reach their goal.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I evaluate a student's academic needs by discussing which areas they feel they have the most difficulty in, followed by an assessment test. I evaluate a student's learning needs by discovering the best way they retain information (visually, audibly, etc.).
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I adapt my tutoring to the student's needs by being prepared to utilize a wide range of teaching styles. Some students like pretty printouts, some prefer acronyms, and others may even retain information when it is set to the tune of a song they like.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
During a session, I typically use pre-made questions to begin helping a student, then move on to providing information I feel would best aid them. For example, some students simply need to practice repeatedly, while others need guided study.